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Next Generation
Name: Jackie
Age: 14
Interests: MultiMedia

Jackie is the 14-year-old co-founder of Girl Tech, a multimedia company dedicated to encouraging girls to use technology. Jackie and her mother, Janese Swanson, started Girl Tech six years ago after witnessing one of the products we co-invented being marketed solely to boys.

At Girl Tech, Jackie worked with developers to invent new products and consulted with designers about the way the products look and feel. She has invented a number of toys and is in the process of producing a new space-themed toy for girls. She also speaks often, discussing the issue of gender equity.

Jackie is a member of the Young Women of NASA Advisory Council where she shares her entrepreneurial experience and helps other girls achieve their dreams.

Last year, Jackie watched the STS-93 launch at Kennedy Space Center, where she had an opportunity to meet the astronauts. Jackie was inspired by these role models, especially Kathryn Sullivan. Jackie also attended a panel discussion with Sally Ride, the first woman in space; Marta Bohn-Meyer, first woman to fly an SR-71); Donna Shirley of the Mars exploration program; and Ellen Ochoa, first Hispanic woman in space.

After several cancellations and four days of waiting, Jackie witnessed the launch. Here is an excerpt from an article she wrote about the event:

Day Four
It finally happened! Everything went smoothly this time. We got all the way through the countdown, and the shuttle blasted into space! It was even more fascinating than I had imagined.

It looked like a giant fireball hurtling towards the sky. Then it turned into a bright star, and then a little star that kind of looked like Mars. And then it was 200 miles above the earth, all within 10 minutes.

How cool it was that the entire state of Florida could see the shuttle shooting into the sky, but none of my friends at home in California would have any idea of what it looked like. I knew I was going to have a great story to tell when I got home.

I feel really lucky to have been invited to witness the shuttle launch. It was one of the most exciting things I've ever done. It also makes me want to try even harder to help other girls get interested in technology. I want to keep spreading the word that science and technology are not just for boys!
Read the full story of Jackie's STS-93 Adventure.

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